tv Countdown With Keith Olbermann MSNBC November 25, 2009 1:00am-2:00am EST
almost nothing with since she was on the vice-presidential ticket with senator john mccain. in her book, it's largely a score settling book. there's not a lot of policy laid out. it looks like she's doing it to further her own private ambitions, which is fine. but not political ambitions. ron is right. if she wants to be elected president of the united states, not head of the republican party, she needs to broaden her coalition. the problem with that -- >> this country bet on it before and they might do it again. thank you ron. thank you chris. join us tomorrow night at 5:00 eastern for more "hardball." "countdown" starts now. bltsds bltsds which of these stories will you be talking about tomorrow? the plan to sink joe lieberman. could his vote be replaced with snowe or collins? why can't lieberman remember why
he's opposed to the public option? he's given six different answers in six months. >> all we are asking is let the senate consider these issues one by one. if joe lieberman carries the day, so be it. if he doesn't, she shouldn't stop everyone from voting on it. our special guest, congressman allen grayson. the president and afghanistan. the decision looms with an exit strategy attached. >> it's my intention to finish the job. >> the intention of the shameless chicken hawk criticizing from a secure undisclosed location. >> i worry there's a lack of understanding there, what this means from the perspective of the troops. >> that's dick cheney, who never talked to the troops except in a photo-op. ex-static religious visions of sister sarah. this is more than just vague policies decisions about jewish
people in the west bank. >> more and more jewish people will be flocking to israel in the days and weeks and months ahead. now criticizing billy graham. the fundamentalist prophesy that sarah palin thinks she understands. >> first, obama's dinner for the prime minister of india. fox news reported john boehner wasn't invited. he was invited, but declined to go home to ohio to, i don't know, work on his tan. worsts, beck calls mary landrieu a prostitute. now says, we know you're hooking, you're just not cheap. >> where are the denounceiations for conservative women. where is the call for beck to be fired from sarah palin? all the news and commentary now on countdown. >> i guess shame is dead. good evening from new york.
as the self declared spoiler of the health care reform bill that begins next week, who does junior senator from connecticut represent? 10% do not have health insurance tonight. aetna, one of the health insurance with their headquarters. joe lieberman declaring under no circumstances will he vote for a bill with a public option. he still caucuses with the democrats because -- "time" magazine has dubbed the senator from aetna drawing a line in the sand, in an interview with the "wall street journal" telling the newspaper, i'm going to be stubborn on this refusing to accept the trigger compromise proposed by the republican of maine, ol limbia snow. the government or the taxpayers are liable for the deficit that government plan runs, really without limits except for the projection by the congressional budget office that the bill will save the
government money. will reduce the federal deficit by $130 billion over the first decade and by as much as $650 billion over the second decade. in addition, health care reformers of all political stripes telling ron brownstein of atlantic.com that the bill appears to be the best effort to contain costs. mark mcclellan, former bush administration official, brother to scott, saying to this cost containment measure, it would be good if more could be done. this is the right direction to go. jonathan gruber, the leading health economist adding, i'm sort of a known skeptic on this. i can't think of a thing to try they didn't try. they make the best effort anyone has ever made. everything is in here. politico.com reporting president obama made brownstein's blog post with that analysis, required reading over the weekend. in a new survey, 79% saying it's important for the president to include health care reform in addressing the nation's economic crisis.
another public policy poll showing the outcome of the health care debate could weigh heavily on the mid-terms next year. if the congress passes a public option with the health care bill democrats lead 46 to 41 on the 2010 ballot. if congress fails to pass a reform, they are split 40-40 between the generic republican and democrat. an actual democrat wondering why senator lieberman is elevated to prominence. >> where did the number 60 take on so much residence? all we're asking is let the senate consider these issues one by one. if joe lieberman carries the day, so be it. if he doesn't, he shouldn't stop everyone else from voting on it. >> time now to call in our own howard fineman. good evening. >> hi, keith. the senator told the wall street journal he's opposed because it would increase the
federal deficit, which it won't. he was opposed to it because americans don't want or support the public option and statistically in all polls, they do. in august, he said the country is in a recession. we need to wait even though lowering the health care would help the economy by the measure of any economist. in june, he said because private insurance provides plenty of competition already. obviously, it's not true and the insurance industry knows it. otherwise, they'd be in favor of this bill. "washington monthly" noted he's had a different reason each month since june. is lieberman making it up as he goes along. >> no, he's doing it deliberately, at least in the eyes of the other democrats in that actual democratic caucus. if you talk to joe lieberman or his staff, and i do, as recently as today, they insist he favors reform and regulation, federal regulation of the health insurance industry to prevent abuses like denying people coverage for pre-existing conditions.
it's the wide spread belief in the democratic caucus, in the democratic cloakroom, joe lieberman's main aim is to kill the bill. he will say or do whatever is necessary from his point of view to do it. that's the widespread view among other democrats on the hill. >> if a republican from maine, a fairly moderate one, like ol limbia snow, floats a trigger compromise that preserves some form of public option, however watered down it is, why do democrats talk to lieberman at this point. who cares, if they can get snowe cheap? >> they are asking themselves the same question, keith. i talked to some of the democratic leadership today. they said, yeah, they think lieberman is a lost cause, as i was just explaining. he did vote to bring the bill up. remember, harry reed said i'm not worried about joe lieberman about bringing the bill up.
they are talking to snowe and susan collins, the other senator from maine. they are looking at the trigger. they are hoping and they may have to get a republican vote. >> what about progressives who don't want the trigger or watered down public option? why is this not the root? kill this bill and resolve as much as you can using budget reconciliation? the 51 vote process. >> that may ultimately be the saving grace at end. it's nothing harry reid and the democratic leadership in the senate want to talk about now. the don't dare talk about it because it's a thing of last resort. it would be full of procedural traps in the long term. they are worried about a loss in the votes, changing the psychology that would get out of control. they are trying to make the case about cost savings, the president understands it's the key thing. that's why he sent ron
brownstein's thing around because it's the key to holding the majority together and trying to get the one republican vote or two republican votes. >> are they still of the mindset, mr. reid, and the president, still of the mindset that any they move the ball forward and since republicans are opposed to any kind of reform, symbolically, any kind of reform is reform? >> it's both. it's both. there are all kinds of reform measures in there. as far as joe lieberman is concerned, they have noted, for example, as others have, when mitch mcconnell was speaking in the close of debate on saturday, the republican leader in opposition of any bill, joe lieberman was sitting on the republican side of the aisle. when harry reid and the democrats were speaking to close the argument on saturday, joe lieberman moved to
the democratic side of the aisle. they are dealing with a guy that clearly has issues. they are focusing on passing a bill any way they can. >> howard fineman, great thanks and have a great thanksgiving. >> you too, thank you. >> another solution to the democratic problems in the senate, change the rules of the senate, require only 55 votes to envolcano closure, the anti-filibuster measure, instead of 60. the senate made a similar change before. invoking cloture used to require 67 votes, more than two-thirds until they reduced it to 60 in 1975. congressman alan grayson, democrat of florida, having started an online petition to stop senate stalling.com to tell reid to change the rules and congressman grayson joins us from orlando. thank you for your time. >> hi, keith. >> i know congress is already in its holiday recess. do you have any gage how
your colleagues reacted to your idea? >> it's too early to say. everybody understands the situation. the house passed 100 bills waiting action by the senate. this is becoming a chronic problem because the republicans are using the filibuster rule to disable government. that's what it comes down to. in the last 110th congress, they used it twice as much as anyone has before. democrat or republican. now, they are going to set a new record with the 111th congress. it can't go on. the country has problems that need to be solved. >> if you were to get 30 seconds to pitch your idea to majority leader reid of the senate, your best 30 seconds, what would you tell him and focus on? >> i think he would be pitching it to me. he's frustrated at this point, himself. we all are. everyone has to recognize, it has to end somehow. americans didn't vote for the status quo last year, they voted for change. they are not getting it because the republicans are acting in a unified fashion to prevent this and to support the status quo.
it's not what america wants or needs. i think senator reid understands that as well as everybody. you need to also recognize in the past when republicans wanted to pass something, they ignored the rules. tax cuts for the rich passing with 51 votes. the free trade agreement with central america, medicare part d pass with fewer than 60 votes. every time the republicans came up against this impediment and the democrats were asserting themselves, they rolled over it. >> you heard what howard fineman said about reconciliation and doing much of the bill in the senate that way. is that a better alternative to changing the cloture rules in the middle of the game? >> if we need to, it's fine. we need to solve people's problems, to give them the health care they need and the jobs they need. right now, the republicans are executing on their game plan, which is to disable the government. years ago, they started it when they appointed lobbyists to run
the government in the executive branch. they contracted out everything to their contracting cronies. they cut off the revenue to the government by tax cuts with the rich. now, they're following that with a cloture rule. it's got to end. we have a democracy and we need to show it's what it is. >> from a partisan view, let's say j mr. reid went, this is the best idea i have heard all week. we can get it done by next thursday. what happens if and when the republicans regain control of the senate and they have a 55 vote cloture measure? does that factor into this? are you saying the log jam is so bad, it needs to be changed on principle, never mind on party? >> it doesn't matter. we're not talking a democrat or republican problem. we have a problem with democracy. the house is getting business done and the senate isn't because you have 40 determined senators bent on stopping it. that's the problem. now, if we change the rule, it's going to apply just as well to
democrats as well as republicans. the senate is going to be able to get business done. you're not going to see 100 bills piled up waiting to be acted on in the senate. >> congressman alan grayson, thanks for your time. >> thank you. post-traumatic stress disorder is one offer the leading unreported illnesses in the country. one of the most insidious effects is that the victim is likely to employ again coping mechanisms that failed him in the past. it explains not only why dick cheney thinks he was speaking for all u.s. troops when he blasted the commander in chief about afghanistan. but also why some people would still think, after cheney's failures about afghanistan that he has any credibility on the topic. next. i'd like one of those desserts and some coffee. - sure, cake or pie? - pie. - apple or cherry? - cherry.
oil or cream? oil or cream? cream. some use hydrogenated oil. reddi-wip uses real dairy cream. nothing's more real than reddi-wip. dick cheney warns about delay in afghanistan. the current delay, not the one he caused for the seven years of u.s. history ending this past january. oddly, the laughter was not loud enough to peel paint off all the houses in the country.
later, having already called her a quote prostitute, beck calls senator mary landrieu a hooker. one hilarious response to this, one sad non-response. new oppor. (music volume decreases) well, ups can help lower warehouse costs, (music volume increases) while increasing your global reach. (volume increases, decreases) more ups technology can help bring down paperwk. (music volume increases) and ups has more shipping options than anyone. hey, it's time to seize the opportunities with ups. (backbeat swells) there, now that sounds perfect. been putting our clients first. according to a leading independent research firm, in 2009 clients rated wells fargo advisors the #1 u.s investment firm for doing what's best for them. with advisors nearby and nationwide, we're with you when you need advice and planning expertise to meet today's challenges. wells fargo advisors.
the british failed in afghanistan, the soviets failed in afghanistan. bush/cheney leading the greatest military force in history failed in afghanistan. president obama says he has a plan to finish the job. what dick cheney now says. reports claiming mr. obama will announce next tuesday the deployment of at least 30,000 more troops to afghanistan
following what was called last night's final meeting of his war council on his strategy. the president confirming no details. >> the review we have gone through has been comprehensive and extremely useful. it's brought together my key military advisors and civilian advisors. i can tell you, as i said before, that it is in our strategic interest, in our national security interest to make sure al qaeda and its extremist allies cannot operate effectively in those areas. i have also indicated that after eight years, some of those years in which we did not have, i think, either the resources or the strategy to get the job done, it is my intention to finish the job. i feel very confident when the american people hear a clear
rati rationale for what we are doing there and how we intend to achieve our goals, they will be supportive. >> naturally the military genius who helped whip up right wing frenzy over the insanity of taking a few months to hammer out a plan, after eight years of war, could not resist lobbing new insults. actually suggesting today, u.s. soldiers have only one opinion about this and he knows what it is after a radio host teed him up saying obama's decision making is doing something to the troops rather than for. >> why is he doing it to the troops? what's behind this, do you believe? >> i don't really know, scott. i worry that, you know, there's a lack of understanding there of what this means from the perspective of the troops. if you are out there on the line day in and day out and putting your life at risk on a volunteer basis for the nation and you see the commander in chief unable or
appearing to be unable to make a decision about the way forward here, you know, that raises serious doubts. >> mr. cheney might understand the u.s. troops do not think as one. if he ever were to think to any other than those hand-picked for him at photo ops or if he were to join them by getting two deferme deferments sorry, three, no, five deferments. mr. cheney has more experience than anyone in afghanistan making quick decisions that were wrong in 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008. database the u.s. people are themselves sure how to proceed. a poll showing 50% supporting sending 34,000 more troops to afghanistan. 49% opposing.
let's turn to richard wolffe and the author of "renegade, the making of a president." thank you for your time. >> good evening, keith. >> i'm sure some are upset with president obama's dithering and i'm equally sure that some troops are thankful for a president that produces a multipronged deliberative process. does not, mr. cheney, marginalize himself by turning them into a fictionalized monolithic dick cheney supporter? >> i'm sure some troops might have wanted the job to be finished at tora bora and al qaeda leadership killed at that moment. and they might have wanted real armor on their vehicles instead of paying for it themselves. in any case, this hasn't really ever been about quote-unquote supporting the troops because dick cheney may, for instance, have planned for the day after the invasion of iraq if he was interested in that. this is about the politics of posturing about supporting the
troops. that has worked, up to a point. in the end, this is going to be a decision that actually impacts real human beings, real brave men and women in the united state military and being deployed for a second, third, fourth time is actually a huge decision. it has to be defined and executed in the correct way. it's no longer -- this war isn't about a propaganda battle with the taliban. the taliban that people in afghanistan are fighting a guerrilla war, it's not a media war, no matter what dick cheney presents it to be. >> what would dick cheney say about somebody like dick cheney being pointedly and god-awfully convinced of his criticism, being critical of the commander in chief at a time of war? >> they would have played the
patriotic card. one thing that the typical strategy for this kind of tearying would be to say don't question the commander in chief at a time or anything else. in the end, the polls suggest it's not about politics. it's not a left or right division. this is about defining what the mission is. when president obama says he's going to get the job finished, what is the job? that's his challenge next week. it will be to define what this thing is. sarah palin can say the job is to support the troops. you can't just support the troops in abstract. they need a mission. defining that mission is just been one of the biggest failures. that's, of course, one of the big lessons of vietnam. say what the exit strategy is. define the enemy. it's not an open-ended commitment that's somehow going to stand up something in afghanistan. >> what he's going to do in this
speech, from the snapshot i got, the best one he can find is the they are severely limited. the best one he can find is the least worst one. is he likely to be that blunt about it and sell his plan to the country that way? saying look, they all stink. this is the least stinky of them. >> i think he has to be slightly more optimistic than that. he does have to frame this as a long standing effort that's struggled, because of wasted opportunities in the past. whether it was going after the al qaeda leadership, whether it was the political failures in afghanistan of president karzai and the failure, let's face it, to reinvest in the reconstruction in afghanistan, he has to talk about missed opportunities. precisely because he has to say what the opportunity is now. >> richard wolffe of msnbc and author of "renegade" great thanks. >> thank you, keith. one of the less frequently spoken reasons behind the right's unjustifiably smug certitude of what to do in
afghanistan or iraq or iran or israel is back in the news because of something sister sarah palin mentioned in an interview with a reporter last week just before she took over the fixed news primetime lineup to expand her knowledge of the foreign policy of the settlements in the west bank, she has turned to the reverend billy graham. be afraid. be very afraid.
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lou dobbs says he's running for president. running is optimistic. a passenger on a northwest flight from portland to seattle, stood up, showed the attendant wires with red sticks, a bomb he claimed. when the plane landed, he released the passengers in exchange for money and chutes ordered the pilots to take off, again. money in his pockets, he jumped out of the plane over southwest washington state. the air force jets trailing the plane never saw anybody bail out. the man who called himself dan cooper vanished. eight years later, about 3% of the money was found by campers. let's play "oddball." a slightly different crime, we begin with dashcam footage in ohio. he was pulled over for bank robbery suspicion, placed on the hood of the cruiser so they could frisk him for weapons. an officer pulled his wallet
out. a white piece of paper appeared. they missed it at the time, but police believe that piece of paper was the hold up note he used in the robbery. ford remains in custody. police have enough evidence to convict him. a station rookie is being kept on duty just in case. to a formula one racetrack, ferrari's ceo is taking a couple drivers for a spin around the track in california. it's the first front engine fer ari with a v-8, seven-speed dual. it's the first to suck on gravel. we're not sure why he pulled off into the gravel pit designed to stop cars before they smack into the grandstand. the boys in the back got out to push, to no avail. all three men were forced to do a walk of shame, back to an ordinary 1979 chevy. back to brazil. you have to give melee way with the pronouns here. things got ugly at the miss gay
brazil beauty pageant. the 2009 miss gay brazil was doing the press rounds when her wig and tiara got teared off by a runner up. right here. the shocked winner lost her hair and crown. you have to be positively identified. officials believe she was wearing a disguise. back here at home, carrie prejean -- sister sarah palin turns to a troublesome source, billy graham on a casual remark. she may be one of those apocolypse antichrist believers. date line, new jersey. best self-delusion, lou dobbs running for president. talking to fred, mail it in, thompson said had you thought of running for president. dobbs replied, i'm talking -- yes is the answer.
and i'm going to be talking some more with some folks who want me to listen to them in the next few weeks. i do know this. i'm going to have the best advice. i may make a terrible decision, but i'm going to have great advice. lou, at the end, you are having trouble getting more viewers than jane velez-mitchell. how are you going to get enough votes to become president? president of lou. number two, senator david vitter, republican of louisiana. louisiana democratic party responded to the unconscionable use of the word prostitute to describe mary landrieu, a word used by beck and limbaugh, now called upon one of the state's leading politicians to denounce the word, prostitute.
senator vitter. senator vitter has been silent. his expertise in the area of prostitutes would do good. best celebrity romance news, carrie prejean and producer of amateur auto porn is, according to radar.com is in love with backup st. louis rams quarterback kyle boller. they are dating. and writes a dedication to kyle. to steal the post, from the sports sight, dead spin, rams coaches saying boller has been watching a lot of films lately. (announcer) they've been tested, built and driven like no other. and now they're being offered like no other. come to the winter event and get an exceptional offer on the mercedes-benz of your dreams. it's our way of showing a little holiday spirit. but hurry - the offer ends soon.
like she was drifting away. we wanted to be there for her... to hold on to her. mom's doctor said his symptoms were signs of alzheimer's, a type of dementia, and that prescription aricept could help. it's thought aricept may reduce the breakdown of a vital chemical in the brain. studies showed aricept slows the progression of alzheimer's symptoms. it improves cognition and slows the decline of overall function. (announcer) aricept is well tolerated but not for everyone. people at risk for stomach ulcers or who take certain other medicines should tell their doctors because serious stomach problems such as bleeding, may get worse. some people may experience fainting. some people may have nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, bruising, or not sleep well. some people may have muscle cramps or loss of appetite or may feel tired. in studies these were usually mild and temporary. (woman) if it helps mom be more like herself longer,
nothing to indicate they are anything but mainstream. in the last two weeks, she revealed pieces of the puzzle that suggest she shared the belief of her church, the assemblies of god, that jesus lifts true believers up with him in the end times, the rapture as non-believers suffer through the a ppocolypse. she's implying now that her interpretation drives core elements of her policy as the washington times declared palin shares the belief in the end times. >> there are some things about the natural resources, about the state, there were things god wants to tap into to be a refuge for the lower 48. i believe alaska is one of the refugee states. come on, you guys, in the last days f. >> the last days, they believe, cannot happen until israel is restored and
the temple rebuilt. here is what palin's church believes. when the modern nation of israel was foundeded in 1948 and jews began returning from all around the world, the bible scholars knew that god was at work and that we were very likely living in the last few days. thus saith the lord god, behold i will take the children of israel whether they be gone and will gather them on every side and bring them to their own land. does palin believe the armageddon, destruction of israel and death of jews and other non-believers, this will happen soon. no evidence of that until last week. when asked about her own ambitions, palin said she can make no predictions. >> i am not one to predict what will happen in a few years. >> when asked about israel, immigration down to fewer than 20,000 jews a year, palin suddenly decided she can make predictions without identifying the source of her predictions.
>> i believe the jewish settlement should be allowed to be expanded upon because that population of israel will grow. more and more jewish people will be flocking to israel in the days an weeks and months ahead, just as ezekiel prof sized. explaining why israel gets a special place in her foreign policy, telling shimon peres, the only flag is israel. at jerry falwell's university this is the belief of the second regathering, when the youish nation is converted, then there is the gathering. and he declared 2009 a year to focus on the end times. >> we who live who survive shall
be caught up together in the clouds to meet the lord in the air. >> in 1970, billy graham's world-wide pictures released a documentary explaining israel's essential role in rapture prophesy. >> all god says, my people, i will open your graves of exile and cause you to rise again and return to the land of israel. >> british pop star cliff richard even sings a song about it. ♪ slowly from hiding surely they come ♪ ♪ back to the homeland their father fathers will fare ♪ ♪ israel their home now they are here at last ♪ ♪ never to roam.
>> i prefer it when he opens with congratulations. sarah palin met billy graham and calling islam an evil religion. franklin gave her a tidbit. she quizzed him on the presidents he's known and wanted his take on what the bible says about israel, iran and iraq. if she wants to discuss her faith, we invite her to say what it says and its role in the rapture and the fate of israel and the jews who choose to keep their faith. the phoney partisanship over the obama dinner tonight. turns out to be nothing different than john boehner wanted to go home early for thanksgiving. an am bubush forced bill to
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the first state dinner in the obama administration. accompany by what is hardly a false accusation in a slight against the gop. beck is still trying to sell you gold even though you can't sell it back. a flip-flop from a bail out supporter. another fall-out he controls programming decisions at pbs. and the weather -- you gonna ask him this time? about what? our erectile dysfunction. shh...no...i don't want to talk about it. look, you're not alone, millions of men with ed have talked to their doctors. i don't know... we can do this. okay... (announcer) talking to your doctor about ed may be the last thing you want to do, but it's definitely a conversation worth having. twenty million men have had their viagra talk. when you're ready for yours... you'll find helpful tips on talking to your doctor
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coincidence? no meat at the first state dinner. the guest of honor is a vegetarian. no meat to the fact the president excluded key republicans. one was invited, but decided to go home, instead. worst persons in the world. the bronze to the fired hewlett packard ceo running for the senate from california as a republican. she's on the bank bail out on the fox noise quote, the bank bail out was necessary because credit is tight for hard working americans. she credited it for unlocking credit. now that the bailout has worked, she held a breakfast for an american spectator. she said she was opposed bailouts and president obama's economic stimulus package. ma'am, you're embarrassing yourself and you're explaining again why hewlett packard dumped you.
bill o. bill moyers announced after 38 years in television news he will be retired from his program on pbs. i think we, jesse waters drove him out of pbs. i think jesse waters is responsible for bill moyers leaving. now, he's hammering bush and cheney. they wanted him impeached. taking shots at the factor. they sent jesse out to talk with him. in the ambushed interview from the stalker producer, they mopped the floor with the kid. he invite d him to come on the show because o'reilly didn't do it. they sent the other flunky, borter barry and nobody has seen barry since. in these interviews from two and three years ago, that's what bill thinks drove moyers out of pbs. he has his own police force. o'reilly never does the interviews himself because, well -- here kitty, kitty, kitty.
our winner, a two-fer from lo lonesome roads, beck. fairly recent survivor, i think i can say this, i don't think what they took out of his was his appendix. predicting a collapse of the american economy, he says, i like to call the 3g system, it's god, gold and guns. you might take god and put him as an umbrella over the whole thing, then you have your gun and gold, too. his dirty secret is it's a scam. a cash cow. he's in it for the money. he keeps trying to sell people gold because a large percentage of his advertisers sell gold. here's a fact beck never mentions. the gold sellers will buy it back from you at 60% or 70% of the going wholesale price they charge you. if you buy gold and the price doesn't go up 30 or 40%, you will never make your money back, let alone make a profit. beck calls mary landrieu a
prostitute. did it on the radio. did it on television. we know you're hooking, you're just not cheap. at the end of the same attack, of verbal i diarrhea, beckon concluded, i guess shame is dead. shame died. what would you know about shame? where are the conservative feminists? a women politician is called a prostitute. it's okay. it's okay if i call sarah palin one. the hell it is.
thank you. you know, just to be safe i used fedex office print online. oh you did? yeah -- they printed and bound 20 copies of the presentation, shipped it to portland, they're gonna be there waiting for us. that's a good idea. yeah. you have a nice flight. thank you. (announcer) print online...you upload your document -- we'll take care of the rest.
the number one story, the made up hysterics over the guest list. a short time ago, the president and first lady greeting the indian prime minister, he and his wife. the festivities will accommodate a guest list of over 300. they have been moved inside this heated tent on the south lawn. the right accused the president of keeping the gop out of the big tent. in the "washington times," top republican lawmakers not attending the dinner, the obama white house snubbed gop leaders. it wrote house minority leader john boehner won't be there. he's on thanksgiving break. and his deputy, rep eric cantor of virginia also didn't get an invitation. a headline not invited. next to a link about the hollywood a-listers attending
the dinner and the headlines celebrity curry. number one, to be left out, they linked the article to the washington times. later updated its post to reflect actual facts. now, what boehner and mcconnell are missing out on at this hour, the guests seated and waiting on the toast from the president. they will dine on china. the purple floral centerpieces. the apple green linens are intended to pay homage this the in indian peacock. it brings me to the grand puba of crying foul. claiming the obama administration ruined turkey day. has any president tried to hijack thanksgiving? i'm surprised he didn't do it wednesday or thursday night. no mention of the day's controversies as the president gave a toast earlier -- later, rather. for the record, 39 seconds of research finds that president johnson had a state dinner for the president of west germany
five days before christmas in 1965. even though president bush only held six state dinners in eight years, one for the japanese prime minister, one was five days before the fourth of july in 2006. joining us now, columnist, craig crawford. also the co-author of "listen up, mr. president." good evening. craig. >> looked like those folks thanksgiving hasn't been hijacked. they have having a good time. >> is there nothing left? is there nothing apolitical left, even state dinners that the ultimate pomp over meaning? >> maybe about the only thing left is politicizing a state funeral, i guess. this is part of a plan that the political parties do quite often. it's intense in this round of trying to delegit mity mize the president of the other party. they have been doing it in so
many different ways. attacking a state dinner is one way to do it, i suppose. >> if you are going to polit politicize something like this and open it up, is it not appropriate to ask why the minority leader of the house could not stick around to represent this party like the prime minister of india? >> i'm sure if it was reverdict, that's what we would hear from them. they couldn't stick around to do this. i think it's part of a plan that delegitimizes this president. not even give him this platform and go there and suck it up and pretend to get along. the vice president on the left there. the guest list was a closely regarded secret. obviously, we knew the vice president would be there. it was released early this evening. anybody watching could see the arrivals. do we talk about the hollywood stars or is the one advantage of having this thing scheduled where it is, nobody from the right is going to be at work tomorrow, and none of this gets played tomorrow? >> right.
i think they are going to make the effort to the hollywood president, the celebrities that are there, make a big deal out of that. past presidents had celebrities at all these kinds of events. that's nothing new. it's an old call 800 golden oldies from clinton for attacking him being so close to hollywood. never hurt him. i think it helps the president in a way. >> what is the significance? i guess it's largely answered by the historic nature of this, list store rick historic continuum. is there additional significance to the president selecting india as the country that gets the honor of his first state dinner? >> there's been concern in state departments that india was feeling left out with all the attention paid to pakistan, which they don't get along with too well. it's a huge democracy, one of the biggest in the world.
sometimes, i think some of those countries feel like we pay so much attention to the bad guys, we overlook the good guys. don't say, because the right will come after you, don't say they are the biggest democracy, even though they are, the attention to detail everything from the menu to the tables to the dress mrs. obama has. the first lady will be in this outfit designed by an indian born american designer. does pulling off an impressive welcoming dinner actually lead to diplomatic headway? does it lead, no pun, to mate to the bones? >> i don't know of any except when you open up relations with a new country and the pomp and circumstance is new to them. there's nothing to replace it with the hard work behind the scenes and get deals made. dinners look nice and help the president look presidential.